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[list-lis] /ˈlɪst lɪs/
having or showing little or no interest in anything; languid; spiritless; indifferent:
a listless mood; a listless handshake.
Origin of listless
late Middle English
1400-50; late Middle English lystles. See list4, -less
Related forms
listlessly, adverb
listlessness, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for listlessness
  • Sadness and listlessness are also hallmarks of major depression.
  • The enduring listlessness of the economy makes that a tricky sell.
  • People dance, sing and mate with absolute listlessness.
  • His impatience with the listlessness and bickering of his fellows is understandable.
  • listlessness and a weak pulse are symptoms of severe dehydration.
  • He was often off sick or playing hooky and suffered from a kind of ennui, a mixture of listlessness and willful melancholy.
  • Water is the best remedy for dehydration and listlessness.
  • Symptoms are usually listlessness accompanied by weight loss and abdominal stress.
  • Birds that do not die acutely may show signs of listlessness, shivering and huddling.
British Dictionary definitions for listlessness


disinclined for any effort or exertion; lacking vigour, enthusiasm, or energy
Derived Forms
listlessly, adverb
listlessness, noun
Word Origin
C15: from list desire + -less
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Contemporary definitions for listlessness

having no inclination or spirit; characterized by unwillingingness to exert

Word Origin

Middle English list 'desire' + less's 21st Century Lexicon
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Word Origin and History for listlessness



mid-15c., from Middle English liste "pleasure, joy, delight" (see list (v.4)) + -less. Related: Listlessly; listlessness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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